Monday, 29 September 2014

September Beauty Favourites

I can't believe September has already been and gone and we are well into the Autumn now. As you may have seen from my previous post I have been changing up my make-up for the colder months, so I have a lot of new make-up bits added to my everyday routine and quite alot of favourites this month. 

YSL Youth Liberator Foundation
My mum bought this ages ago so I decided to just give it a try this month and I fell in love. I am a massive fan of the YSL Teint Touche Eclat foundation so I had high hopes for this one, and after reading everybodys rave reviews about it I was expecting great things! I am seriously impressed by this foundation- so much so I am planning a full review of it in the coming weeks. My skin has been a little bit worse for wear lately, breakouts, redness, uneven patches- it was just a mess. So I majorly stripped down my skincare and started using this foundation. I'm not sure if it is the foundation, or my skincare routine but my skin has completely evened out and any redness has been majorly reduced! It is a medium/high coverage foundation which I always prefer and I would say it has a "satin" finish which feels nice and moisturising so it is perfect for the  cooler Autumnal months. I find it lasts all day on my skin with minimal touch-ups required. 

Anastasia Brow Whizz
I have become obsessed with eyebrows over the past couple of months and have tried and tested numerous products to try and achieve the perfect brow. Again I had heard alot of hype around this product so I was so excited to finally try it. This pencil makes doing your eyebrows so easy. It is actually part of my routine I look forward to doing now purely because I get to use this. It has a teeny tiny nib so it makes it really easy to mimic the look of brow hairs, therefore giving a much more natural look to the finished look. I have mine in Medium Brown which is a perfect match for me, and the spoolie on the end just makes life so much easier! 

 Essie Angora Cardi
Whats a monthly favourites post on this blog without an Essie polish? I have been lusting after this nail polish ever since I first discovered Essie, bur for some reason it was always one that I never got a chance to pick up. It was always either out of stock or I forgot about it. But on a recent trip to Galway I spotted it in Boots and snapped it up! I would describe this polish as a dusky rose colour, so it is perfect for Autumn. It is a very easy colour to wear for everyday, not too dark and gives a lovely polished look to your nails. I have had this on my nails everyday since I got it, and even my mum has worn it- and she is very picky with her nail colours!  

 Cocoa Brown Gentle Bronze
If you had asked me a few months a go what my favourite Cocoa Brown product was I would have sworn blind it was the 1hr tan and that nothing else would ever come close. I think that my beloved 1hr tan has been knocked off the top spot by the "Gentle Bronze" Gradual tanner. For the colder months I wanted to start embracing my natural colour(ish) so I was trying to wean myself off the darker shades of tan and go for a more "sunkissed" look. I find that the Gentle Bronze gives an amazing colour with just one application. You can go back and add more layers depending on how dark you want to go. I have been applying this every second night, and my regular body moisturiser every other night and I have been loving the results! Cocoa Brown never lets you down! 
 MaxFactor Clump Defy Mascara
This is a mascara I picked up after watching Suzie from Hello October's monthly favourites last month. I love thick volumious lashes, but it is a very fine line between volume and clumping. This mascara claims to give amazingly plumped up lashes without any of the clumpage. Like Suzie mentioned in her video, it took me a little while to really like this mascara. After about a week or so of using it I started to really really like it. I think you need to let it dry out a little bit first and then it gets so much easier to work with. It really does give amazing volume to my lashes while still making them appear defined and lengthed. I'm not sure if I prefer this to my Maybelline Falsies, but it's coming pretty close!

Zoeva Rose Gold Brushes
Yes I finally caved and bought those brushes. I have been lusting after these since they were originally released, then they went out of stock (typical) and then I wasn't sure if I really needed them. But after staring longingly at pictures of them for months I just ordered them. And I am not sorry. This is my first experience with Zoeva brushes and I am delighted to report back that it is a good one. All of these brushes are fantastic quality and are all I have been using over the past couple of weeks since I've gotten them. My favourites are the Silk Finish buffing brush, the Luxe Soft Definer brush and the Luxe Sheer Cheek brush. All of the brushes are incredibly beautiful and amazing to use! Full review coming soon! 

The Wet Brush
You all know how loyal I am to the tangle teaser, but that was until the Wet Brush had arrived in my life. It glides through my hair and detangles in one swipe. It doesn't tug or split my hair. I have been using this everyday since I got it and I am obsessed. It also has the added bonus of a handle which is something I have missed with the tangle teaser. I would thoroughly recommend you get your hands on one of these. Amazing!

I feel like I have had so many products this month, and I have a feeling next month will be the same because there are so many exciting make up launches coming up and I just want to try everything! Let me know what your number one product this month has been and why!

Monday, 22 September 2014

Transitioning into Autumn

As my favourite time of the year is rolling in I have been picking up a few different make up items to help transition my make up look to suit the season. I absolutely adore Autumn, I love the weather, the fashion- all the different layers, textures and the darker colours- and of course the make up. Everything just gets that little bit darker and a little bit more vampy. Colours that I would reserve for an occasional night out are now deemed as everyday appropriate. I think lipstick is the easiest way to change up your look for the colder months. There have been two lip products in particular that I have been reaching for the past couple of weeks as the change in seasons has begun. 

MAC Rebel- I think this is one lipstick that most people have in their collection, it is a very dark vampy plum colour. Perfect for that night out statement lip but can also be patted into the lips lightly to create a very subtle everyday berry lip look. It has a Satin finish so it leaves a lovely gloss to the lips, and feels nice and moisturising too. But I would advise to use a lip liner as things can get a bit messy and you will definitely need a mirror to apply this bad boy!

No.7 Matte Lip Crayon Raspberry Red – I love a matte lip, especially in the colder months and this new release from No.7 has been ticking all the right boxes for me. It is extremely similar in formula to the Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencils which you all know I love, so it’s nice to have something a little easier on the pocket to just have for everyday use. It is not at all drying on the lips, in fact it feels quite moisturising while still remaining completely matte. The shade is absolutely beautiful - a lovely raspberry that really looks well with a deep pink blusher on the cheeks, and a neutral eye. I love having this thrown in my handbag because it is perfect for just brightening up my everyday look if I feel things are getting a little dull or worse for wear.

For nails you all know I love my darker shades anyway but once the leaves start falling  I turn to the deep reds, plums and burgundies straight away. My picks this year are along the same colour thread as they are every year but I picked up some new ones recently that I wanted to share with you.

Essie Angora Cardi- This has been on my wishlist since I first discovered Essie polishes but only recently managed to get my hands on it. It is a dusky pink colour that is very neutral and non-offensive on the nails. I would call this my sophisticated colour as it looks very sleek and tidy and just makes you look that little bit more put together. The colour goes opaque in one swipe and is really long lasting on my nails. I know this will be my staple colour for the cooler months so expect to see it appear in a monthly favourites soon! 

Barry M Cocoa- This is one of Barry M's latest releases in their Gelly Hi-Shine range which you all know I am a massive fan of already. This is a beautiful rich, chocolate brown which I think it is one of those shades that would suit everybody. You do need a minimum 2 coats of this to achieve opacity but once its dry it does not budge! As with the rest of the range, this polish is amazingly shiny and glossy on the nails so it looks like you have had them professionally done.

Finally for eye make-up, this is the area of makeup where I normally play it safe and go for my everyday neutrals. But lately I have been dabbling into abit more colour and going a little more smokey for everyday. I have two eyeshadow duos which if I’m in a hurry are really easy to just grab and throw on because I know the colours will look well together and minimal effort is required.

Estee Lauder Raisins Duo- This was the eyeshadow duo to have this time last year- with good reason! The rich colours look amazing together and are so surprisingly wearable. I was always afraid of pink-toned eyeshadows before I got this, because I thought they would make me look sick or that I have an eye infection, but I reached for this so much last year and got so much wear out of it. The quality of Estee Lauder eyeshadows are beautiful, they are really pigmented and very easy to work with. I would definitely recommend you check them out!

MAC Cranberry & Twinks- I couldn't really talk about eyeshadows without talking about something from MAC. Everyone..everyone loves Cranberry for Autumn. It is a red shadow which looks absolutely terrifying in the pan but absolutely beautiful when applied with a darker shade in the crease- enter Twinks, a darker plum shade. I love wearing Cranberry all over my lid with Twinks blended into my crease. The two complement each other perfectly. While they may not be perfect for an everyday eye look it's definitely nice for an evening out with a little bit of winged liner!  

Do let me know what your favourite products for Autumn are and I'll be sure to check them out! 

Saturday, 13 September 2014

The Balm | Mary Lou Manizer

It was the Jemma Kidd All Over Radiance Cream in Iced Gold that truly sparked my obsession with highlighters. Since that has sadly been discontinued I have been on the hunt to find something equally as good. I do have my favourite cream highlighter the No.7 Instant Radiance which I have reviewed here, but there are days where I'm not in the mood for cream products and just want the convenience of a powder. I had heard rave reviews on many of The Balm's products - in particular the Mary-Lou Manizer so I eventually gave in as I always do and ordered it. I ordered from Cloud 10 Beauty and as always the parcel arrived beautifully packaged and really quickly. Of course as soon as it arrived I had it on my cheek bones within minutes, and a couple of minutes after that I had an Instagram picture up of it asking where it had been all my life. This highlighter is absolutely amazing. I have used it everyday since getting it and have gotten so many compliments and questions on what I'm wearing. 

First off the packaging - it is cute, compact and sturdy. Everything we could ever want. You get so much product for your money - 8.5g to be exact- and since you need only the tiniest amount I can imagine this will last for a very long time. It also comes with a mirror in the compact which is always an nice addition. The powder itself is just so ridiculously pigmented. The smallest touch of a brush will do both my cheeks and down the centre of my nose. It is a champagne coloured highlighter which are my favourite shade for my skin-tone as I think it is the most flattering and natural looking. The effect this highlighter gives to the tops of my cheekbones is just out of this world. It gives such a natural looking radiance to the skin without the slightest hint of glitter. As I said before you really do need the tiniest amount of this product to get the desired effect. It is really easy to get a little too "brush happy" with this one so go in light-handed ladies! 

If you love your highlighters you NEED this beauty in your life! You won't regret it promise. It's available online here from Cloud10Beauty. Let me know if you have tried this highlighter and what your thoughts are! Also let me know what your all time favourite highlighter is!

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Sick Day Essentials

So you might have heard that this week I am abit under the weather. (Its not like I've mentioned it on twitter a million times, worst patient ever!) I haven't been feeling right for about a week now. But since I still have to go about my normal day and am still expected to look human I decided to share with you the products I have been reaching for this past week to try and help me look that I am still functioning - even though underneath I am a pale, shivering mess.

YSL | Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation
I have been trying to give my skin as much glow and moisture as possible because it is definitely looking a little worse for wear. So of course I have been reaching for the foundation with the serious "glow-factor". I love this foundation because it gives you such a natural, healthy looking glow which is exactly what my poor skin needs at the moment. It doesn't feel heavy on my skin as the day goes on and it is relatively long lasting (although after blowing your nose a couple of times you might need to top up to avoid looking like Rudolf!)

The Balm | Mary Lou Manizer
Following on from the glow-giving foundation, I have been piling on the highlighter. The one I have been loving this past week is the Mary Lou Manizer from The Balm. Now I have heard so so many reviews and ravings about this highlighter and I just never believed the hype. I ordered it on a bit of  a whim last week and have been using it solid since it arrived. It is safe to say the hype is definitely true. Where has this been all my life?! It is the most amazingly pigmented highlighter I have ever used. It is not glittery and just gives your skin a very "Hollywood Glow" look without looking like you dipped your head in grease!

Rimmel Scandaleyes Eyeliner | Nude
This eyeliner is the most well-loved in my collection. When I am sick my contacts feel so uncomfortable and my eyes always tend to go red and puffy. So during the day when it is socially unacceptable to go around with pieces of cucumber on my eyes I have been carrying around my nude eyeliner instead. It is perfect for cancelling out any redness and giving you a wide-eyed, well rested look that you may not have achieved by sleep.

NUXE | Reve de Miel Lipbalm
Finally to keep the chapped lips at bay I have my tub of Reve de Miel with me. This is the lipbalm that puts all others to shame. It gives my lips such amazing moisture that I have never gotten from anything else. It is a seriously heavy-duty lipbalm. It has a matte finish which is unusual for a lipbalm but it feels lovely and velvety on the lips and stays on for ages!

So those are my "sick day" products, along with plenty of Kleenex and paracetamol! Let me know what products you would use if you are feeling a little under the weather! (PS the tissues in the pictures are not used, promise!)

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Soap & Glory | Massage Glove for Cleaning Brushes?

Don't judge me yet, let me explain! I'm sure you've all seen that brush cleansing glove from Sigma, it looks like it makes brush cleaning a breeze but the price really put me off and I just couldn't justify it! So when I seen this on the shelves of Boots I whipped it up hoping it would be a good dupe. 

It's not identical to the Sigma one in the way that the Sigma glove has all these different fancy grooves for different brushes and this one is the same all over. But to be honest that didn't really matter to me, I just wanted to see if it would make deep cleaning my brushes any easier. So when I got home I gathered my Johnson Baby Shampoo and my brushes together (lets just say it was definitely time for a deep clean!) and set off on my cleaning mission. I popped a little bit of baby shampoo onto the centre of the glove and just started to swirl the brush in. I had the tap on as I was doing this so I could dampen the brush as I went and to get rid of any excess shampoo that was getting in my way. 

This glove is absolutely amazing. I found such a difference in my brushes compared to just hand washing them. It really got down to the nitty gritty bits in the middle that you might not get otherwise. The little grooves really help to get right down to the bottom of the bristles to make sure every last piece of dirt has been lifted. Even though it is obviously a little rougher than just using your hand I haven't experienced any shedding or anything like that so I believe it is still gentle enough to use on your brushes.

It is available online here for €11. I think if you have had your eye on the Sigma one definitely give this a go first! 

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Going Bare-Faced?

If you follow me on twitter you will know I recently went a week without makeup. I had a family wedding coming up and I wanted my skin to look good for it. So since I was on holidays from work for the week leading up to the wedding I decided to go cold turkey on the makeup front and didn’t put anything near my face for the five days before the wedding.

 You might be thinking that this is a different blog post coming from me, considering I usually just stick to the beauty reviews and it is but I just wanted to share my experiences with you. Now as you may have gathered from reading my blog I do tend to wear make up on a daily basis. Even if it’s just a little bit of CC cream and mascara, I just feel that little bit more confident with it and above all I just really enjoy applying it and it is part of my daily routine. So to go from that to a bare face was a big step for me. Granted it was a little easier because I didn’t have to go into work but I was still out and about on an everyday basis running errands before the wedding so I still seen people I knew. Going out for the first few days was more daunting than I was expecting. I was almost apologising to people I met out that I knew for my appearance when most of those people probably didn’t care or even notice. Once I got over those couple of days I started to forget that I didn’t have make up on and just went about my day as normal. Plus having the option to rub your eyes in the middle of the day is just a glorious feeling! 

During the week I got so many breakouts which was just typical since I couldn’t put a bit of concealer on to cover it up. I started to do a mini facial every second evening to help draw out all of the impurities that were lurking beneath the surface. During the last couple of days I found such an improvement in my skin. All of the red nasty breakouts had gone down, blackheads were reduced and I found that my skin overall had evened out and just looked a lot brighter and healthier. So the break from make up really did do it the world of good. On the day of the wedding when I finally put on makeup, it glided on and sat perfectly on my skin for the day. I was so happy the way it looked on the day that it really did make it all worthwhile.

I’m sure there are plenty of people reading this and thinking it’s no big deal to go without makeup and there are people that never wear make up but there are also people who wouldn’t dare step outside without their “face” on and before that week I would have considered myself to be in the second category. Since doing my “make-up free week” I have gotten more confidence in my own skin and not caring so much if my face is not perfect because lets be fair who’s is? I feel like I could go out without make up and I really wouldn’t care who I met on my travels where a couple of months ago I wouldn’t have gone out for fear of who I’d see and if they wouldn’t recognize me without makeup (mad I know!)

So as ridiculous as it may sound to some people, I am really proud of myself for going without make up for the week. My skin has really thanked me for it and now I feel less pressure on myself to have make up on everyday. I’d love to hear your opinion on this topic, what are your thoughts on going make up free?

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

August Beauty Favourites

I know I say this every month, but seriously how fast did the past month go? I have tried a lot of new products this month and done a lot of shopping, but I did manage to whittle down my picks to 5 products. Keeping it short and sweet this month! 

Urban Decay De-Slick Setting Spray
I have previously tried the All Nighter spray and was so impressed with it I repurchased both that and the De-Slick spray. I purchased the De-Slick for my cousins wedding this month as I hoped it would help reduce shine and prolong my makeup of course. I used a couple of sprays over my makeup on the morning of the wedding and my makeup lasted all day and night until I removed it myself. I did find the spray helped reduce excess shine without making my skin feel tight or dry. If you have overly oily skin I would recommend you give this ago!

NARS Deep Throat
I fell in love with this blush when I got the One Night Stand palette, so much so that I bought it in a single pan. I have worn it almost everyday this month. Deep Throat is a coral, pink with a touch of golden shimmer running through it. It is the most perfect Summer-time blusher, with a tan it looks amazing! It has definitely got a cult status for a reason and has fast become a holy grail blush of mine!

Chanel Chance Perfume
My mum gave me this perfume towards the start of the month and I have been using it more liberally than I would have liked. It is a very citrus-y scent and so light. It is very light and refreshing and one of the most perfect scents for the Summer (can you sense a theme in these favourites?) Plus everyone needs a bit of Chanel in their lives!

Nars Sheer Glow Foundation
I have already proclaimed my love for this foundation many times but I thought once more wouldn't hurt. This month I repurchased a bottle of my regular shade Monte Blanc and I bought a new shade Fiji which is darker so it would suit my skin better when I am tanned. I wore this for the wedding this month and I was so happy with how my skin looked in the pictures. It looked really natural and there was no flashback in any pictures.

 Smashbox Full Exposure Palette 
Now this is a bit of a cheat because I only bought it the last week in August but I have used it everyday since. The top row are all shimmery shades and the bottom are all matte. There is every colour in it for both day and night time looks. The shadows are all amazing quality, really pigmented, buttery and blend so easily. If you would like to see a full review on this please let me know!

So those are my top picks for the past month, all very Summery picks and I am really excited about the colder months arriving and the darker colours trickling into my makeup.